Thursday, March 20, 2014

South Padre Island, 3/20/14

With a mild cold front and some north wind passing through, I thought it might be good to check out the migrants on South Padre Island.  Nothing too great.  Just typical early spring migrants.  My first stop on the bay near Sheepshead netted these two colorful migrant flycatchers.

The amazing Sheepshead lot had my fist Indigo Buntings for the year.  Now I can announce "Spring is here!"

The Louisiana Waterthrush was still hanging around as were a couple of Northern Parulas.

I checked out lots on Campeche and Atoll but not much was going on, so it was off to the Convention Center where the only warblers around were a few yellow-rumps, a parula and two Black-and-White Warblers.  This one is pretty excited about the tasty ant he just grabbed.

I was hoping for some unusual sparrows today but all I got were a few Lincoln's Sparrows.

A walk on the boardwalk turned up a Sora.  It was so close it was hard to photograph.

And some colorful Roseate Spoonbills.

By now it was noon and time to drive the beach.  The cloudy morning turned into a brilliant sun drenched afternoon.  I was happy to find my first Least Terns for the spring.  Saw over a hundred of them.  Not sure what he's yapping about.  He's probably telling those big Royal Terns to "Back off!"

And speaking of Royal Terns, I saw over a thousand of them today.  They're mostly colored up and ready for the breeding islands.

All afternoon waves of Brown Pelicans passed by.  I saw over 700 of them.  When I first visited the Valley in 1978, Brown Pelicans were quite rare.  But the ban on DDT really helped them out so now they're pretty common.

The beach was good for driving and I made it to the Port Mansfield jetty with no problems.  The only uncommon bird was this Common Tern.  It's showing all the field marks; black hind crown, dark carpal bar and dark outer rectrices.

So nothing too great today, but the migrants are on their way so I'll be back soon.

No comments: